Mukurtu CMS 4

Our development team is hard at work on building the next major version of Mukurtu CMS. We will keep this page (and our newsletter) up to date with all the latest news and announcements. 


Common questions about Mukurtu 4. If you’re looking for information that isn’t here, contact

When will Mukurtu 4 be released?

As of June 7th, 2023, Drupal has set Drupal 7’s final end of life extension for January 5th, 2025: 

We want to allow users as much time as possible to migrate to Mukurtu 4, but releasing a stable platform is a priority for us. The development process has taken longer than we initially hoped, due in part to reliance of contrib modules that were delayed or no longer supported, the nature of a small development team, COVID-related delays, and with the extended end of life for Drupal 7 we took additional time to deeply review and reassess most of Mukurtu’s functions and features. 

At this time, we cannot provide a targeted release date for Mukurtu 4 beyond some time in 2024. We will share updates as we narrow down on a date range. 

Why is Mukurtu 4 necessary?

Mukurtu 3 is built on Drupal 7. After many years Drupal 7 is nearing its end of life and user support, and to ensure that Mukurtu remains stable we need to migrate to a more current platform.

As of June 7th, 2023, Drupal has set Drupal 7’s final end of life extension for January 5th, 2025: 

What platform will Mukurtu 4 use?

Mukurtu 4 is being built with Drupal 9 (currently 9.5) and will be launched on Drupal 10. Drupal 9 and 10 are very similar, and once Drupal 10 is sufficiently stable and our dependent modules are supported, we will do final development on Drupal 10. 

How will we update our site to Mukurtu 4?

Drupal 9 and 10 are substantial technical departures from Drupal 7, and Mukurtu 4 also represents a major change from Mukurtu 3 as a result. You will not be able to “upgrade in place”, the same way that updating from 3.0 to 3.0.1 was possible.  

Broadly, you will need to install a new Mukurtu 4 site, migrate content from your Mukurtu 3 site, and then decommission the old Mukurtu 3 site. We will develop migration tools and provide our usual level of support to make the process as accessible as possible, though some manual work will likely be required.  

If you have done any custom development, changes to metadata schemas, etc, additional work to migrate may be required. 

Will our current hosting provider support Mukurtu 4?

As each hosting provider is unique, we recommend asking about their current or planned support for Drupal 10. Mukurtu 4 will be a Drupal distribution, and should be installed and managed the same as any other Drupal 10 site. 

How long can we keep using our Mukurtu 3 site?

Your current Mukurtu site won’t suddenly stop working when Mukurtu 4 is released. However, since Drupal 7 will no longer be supported after January 5th, 2025, that also means that your site will no longer receive updates, bug fixes, or Drupal security updates. We strongly encourage all users to migrate to Mukurtu 4 once it is officially launched. Any older sites still running Mukurtu 2 or 3 after Drupal 7 support ends do so at their own risk. 

What if I want to start a Mukurtu site before Mukurtu 4 launches?

Since there will be pathways to migrate content from a Mukurtu 3 site to Mukurtu 4, you can start working with Mukurtu anytime. Please note that any custom development or theming will need to be re-implemented in Mukurtu 4, and may require substantially different methods – we recommend avoiding those kind of changes at this time. 

If you would rather wait until Mukurtu 4 is available, there is always lots of advance work that can be done for any project that is not platform dependent – organizing files, creating or cleaning up metadata, etc.… 

Can we test Mukurtu 4?

If you are an experienced Drupal administrator and would like to install the current branch and test it in your own environment, see the quick start for personal testing & evaluation section of the README. Feedback on installation and operation in different environments is very valuable.  
If you would like to test the current branch yourself without using your own infrastructure, we recommend using Gitpod. Once you connect Gitpod to your GitHub account you can install the current branch with one click. These Gitpod instances are designed for short term use and are ideal for quick exploration, but not long-term testing.  

  • This is not a stable release and CANNOT be safely used in a production environment.   
  • No true theming has been done yet. The display is quite minimal. The focus is on functional development. Theming will take place closer to the final, stable release. 

We will provide a hosted sandbox for testing in the future as well, once the development branch is more stable. 

Will you include ________ in Mukurtu 4?

Our focus for the Mukurtu 4 launch is to have a stable platform that supports and improves as much existing functionality as possible so that all users can continue to use Mukurtu. Some new features will be included at launch, while others may be added in future releases. 

We have a list of new features and improvements that have been generated by Mukurtu users. If you think of something that is not mentioned here, let us know through the Mukurtu 4 community channels below. We encourage all feedback and requests. 


At launch, Mukurtu 4 will include the core features, functions, and tools available in Mukurtu 3. Many features will work differently on the back end, but the core values will carry forward. Below is a non-exhaustive list of features we are planning to include at launch.

Site structure 

  • Communities, cultural protocols, and categories will remain largely unchanged. 
  • A workflow to guide users through creating communities and protocols is being added. 
  • ALL protocol-aware content will require protocol selection. Previously protocols were optional for some content types (collections, dictionary words). 


  • Several adjustments to dictionary metadata fields are planned. 
  • Language communities as they operate in Mukurtu 3 will be removed, and language tool management will be part of regular communities. 
  • A “index under” field will allow better first-letter sort. 


  • Collections and personal collections will be largely unchanged, with select improvements. 

OHMS (Oral History Metadata Synchronizer)  

  • Integration is planned, TBD. 

User management, roles, and responsibilities 

  • Protocol and community user roles will remain, and some new roles are being added to allow more granular permissions. 
  • Site-wide user roles are being streamlined. 
  • Community managers will be able to create new user accounts (previously limited to Mukurtu administrators). 


  • Search API for simpler installation will continue to be supported. 
  • Solr support will be added for those requiring, and able to support, more complex search tools. 

Multi-page documents/items 

  • Included, updates TBD. 


  • Completely new import and export tools and workflows will be included. 

Taxonomy records (eg: person records, place records) 

  • Included, updates TBD.

Digital heritage items 

  • Core digital heritage item functionality will remain largely unchanged. 
  • The Mukurtu Core metadata schema will have minor changes. 
  • and citing Indigenous elders and knowledge keepers will be added. 

Content moderation workflows 

  • A draft and under review workflow is being developed to streamline content creation and moderation. 
  • A content submission workflow is being developed. 


  • Drupal’s built-in comment tool is improved. 

Localization and translation 

  • Localization will be managed through Drupal’s built-in localization tools. 
  • There will be the possibility of bundling community-contributed language packs. 


  • Protocols will be required for all media assets. 
  • Media management will be simplified now that Drupal has improved built-in media tools. 
  • 3D media assets may be supported, but more input from the community on preferred formats and needs is required. 


  • Mapping will support multiple locations, points, lines, and areas. 
  • Google Maps will be replaced by Open Street Maps. 

TK Labels 

  • Complete integration with the Local Contexts Hub.  
  • TK Labels will no longer be managed solely through a Mukurtu site. 

Look and feel 

  • Stock theming/look and feel is TBD. 
  • Theming will be managed through Drupal’s Twig engine. 

Get Involved

Do you have suggestions or requests?  

Are you interested in giving feedback on proposed developments and ontributing to the conversation? 

Do you have the technical skills to test pre-release versions of Mukurtu 4 and are interested in helping other Mukurtu users? 

If the to any of the above is yes, we invite you to join the Mukurtu Community forum. We are ever thankful to the communities and individuals that have helped drive the development of Mukurtu in the past. Now we want to be even more transparent and bring in more voices and experiences. At this time we will be focusing conversation on Mukurtu 4 development, but we are planning to open the forum to all Mukurtu topics in the future. 

The Mukurtu Community Forum is part of the Mukurtu GitHub repository, and a GitHub account will be required to post.